The Birthday Post | Turning 33

Monday 18 June 2018

So I turned 33 on June 1st, and I was all ready to have a major sulk about it.

I’ve never been someone that likes getting older, and birthdays usually make me feel a little down. I’m not sure exactly why other than the sadness of the inevitable march of time, but I’ve always felt that way since I was a little girl.

If life is one long party, birthdays remind you that it’s getting closer to the time it all ends, and I don’t want to leave.

But when I woke up, the sun was streaming through the blinds, I had my lovely husband and son all snuggled up to me, and my baby daughter kicking away in my tummy, and I just thought - ‘What an earth have I got to be sad about?’.

I’ve got no reason not to celebrate - sure, I am now officially mid-30s but I’m in a really good place and blessed to have good health and my beautiful family, so feeling down because of an arbitrary number is ridiculous.

In the end, I had such a lovely day! First of all, it started with shopping, which is always a good way to begin.

We’d managed to score tickets to the Paul Smith Warehouse Sale and it was ridiculously good. The brand is based in Nottingham, and everyone hears whispers about the ticket-only giant warehouse sales they do, but generally you have to know someone who works there to score an invite. This year we actually managed to get one and it fell on my birthday so it was a perfect opportunity to treat myself!

We went early - and came out with armfuls of gorgeous things (full post coming later). It really was so much more extensive than I’d imagined - a whole giant warehouse full of beautiful goodies at unbelievable prices.

Then we went home and had a lovely long, leisurely breakfast of croissants and strawberries with proper coffee. I really love to take my time with a deluxe breakfast, it’s the greatest treat as I’m normally hurrying around so much in the mornings. In fact, it’s one of the ‘rules’ I always follow to take the sting out of getting older - the others are always to book it off work, always to have at least a glass of champagne and always to do something indulgent and good for the soul!

In the afternoon, we were booked into The Footman’s Rest for an afternoon tea. I’d been dying to visit this venue for a while as I’d heard good things.

It’s a tiny little jewel box of a place, run by an ex-footman of the Queen’s and we were certainly treated like royalty. The service was absolutely impeccable and the whole thing was pure class.

We had the venue to ourselves and the most beautiful food with impeccable service, it was just a really happy occasion and felt like such a treat. I highly recommend it if you’re looking for somewhere extra special. I even shared a cheeky glass of fizz with my husband!

Because birthdays are mostly about eating for me, there was even more food later. When we went home, Seb had made me the most delicious White Chocolate, Strawberry and Vanilla Cream birthday cake. His hidden talent is making the most delicious cakes and he always makes me a different one each year - he’s a great husband! Then we spent the afternoon enjoying the sunshine and feeding the ducks and swans in our garden. It felt like the perfect day, very relaxed and full of lovely touches.

It’s definitely a sign of getting older when the words in the card begin to mean more to you than the gift. I did very well though and had a beautiful birthday haul:

Joules ‘Mariel’ Boucle Jacket

One thing about getting older is that you definitely refine your style and begin to really understand it. Boucle jackets are absolutely my vibe and I have a growing collection! I find that they go with almost anything I wear - I love the vibe of them with boyfriend jeans for a weekend outfit or with a leather pencil skirt for the office. They’re very polished looking but also easy to throw on. This beautiful one is a navy and cream mix with a super pretty grosgrain striped ribbon piping. Everything from Joules is really well made and this is a beautiful jacket I know I’ll enjoy using for years to come.

Longchamp Le Pliage Neo Mini

Another design classic, I’ve slowly been collecting more and more different Le Pliage bags. These foldable, lightweight nylon totes are such a great addition to your wardrobe because they can suit lots of different looks from weekend casual to smart. I use my medium tote and rucksack all the time, and now I have the Neo Mini too. It’s a tiny handbag version of the roomy tote bag, with a long strap that you can wear cross body, and it’s super cute! The fastening panel and handles are in the same colour as the body, and it’s ideal for travel as it’s so lightweight and durable. I’m looking forward to using this with my other Le Pliage pieces for a bit of matchy-match airport chic!

Charlotte Tilbury Instant Look In a Palette

CT has definitely taken over as my favourite beauty brand. All the products I’ve tried are absolute holy grails - beautiful formulations, shades and packaging. Everything I’ve tried has been amazing, and the Filmstar Bronze and Glow, Colour Chameleon Eye Crayons, the KISSING lipsticks and the Instant Eye Palette that Father Christmas was good enough to bring me have all been instant ride or dies. When Instant Look launched, I coveted it straight away, so I’m super excited to have it. It’s a compact palette with all your powder shades in one place for face and eyes. It can really help you to cut down on the products you take with you when you travel, as it gives you all the essentials. Full review coming soon.

St Justin Heart Bracelet

My mum lives down in Cornwall and I don’t get to see her as much as I might like, so when she sends me gifts I like it when they’re a little piece of Cornwall. I’ve had quite a few things from St Justin over the years, which is a little artisan workshop that handmakes jewellery. This pretty mixed metal bracelet will look beautiful on its own or stacked up with other bracelets.

Hunter Originals Raincoat

One thing I’ve really been wanting is a decent raincoat. April showers are real, and I have nothing to deal with them stylishly at the moment. Everyone seems to have those retro-looking yellow rubber ones right now, and I had raincoat envy! When the baby comes, I’ll be spending a lot of time walking around outdoors, but you don’t have hands free to use an umbrella with a pram, so one thing you really do need is a good raincoat with a hood in case the heavens open! And these matte vinyl semi-translucent ones from Hunter Originals are about the most on-trend raincoat I’ve seen! I actually used to have a pink one I bought for myself a few years ago but it got accidentally shredded getting caught in the zip of my bike bag when I was cycling to work. The grey is much more my style (I only got the pink as it was on sale!), so I’m really happy to have this.

Joules ‘Westbourne’ Chelsea boots

I was so excited to open these because I’ve wanted them for the longest time! I first spotted them in one of Lara Jarvis’s videos and I love her style. I live in flat boots and shoes and these are so smart. I adore the sophisticated chestnut leather and the unexpected flash of leopard print which just gives a cheeky little twist to the design. I know I’ll be wearing these constantly come autumn and winter. I’m so pleased Seb managed to track down the leopard ones as this style comes in other colourways, but these were the ones I badly wanted.

Mac Prep +Prime Fix Plus Pinklite

You know when you don’t need something at all, but you really, really want it? Yeah. That. I’ve actually not been much of a fan of Fix Plus in the past - I can think of plenty of others that do a much better job of keeping makeup in place. And yet the shimmer pink drew me in. And what are birthdays for if not for stuff like this? Hydrating, soothing, refreshing AND infused with luminescent pink pearls? This is just one of those products that you want to keep on your dressing table and that is just a complete treat to use.

I had a lovely day and although I may have a few more wrinkles, I’m definitely happy!

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